updated 07:55 am EDT, Fri October 3, 2008
Garmin GPSMAP 600 Series
Garmin finished its week by unveiling a new GPSMAP all-in-one for those boaters who also want to take their GPS navigators on the road. The 600 series has a large, 5.2-inch 800x480 screen friendly to sea navigation with a bird's eye view above the sea as well as 3D underwater mapping; on land, however, it converts into a proper road navigator with spoken street names as well as support for photo-keyed landmarks and custom points of interest beyond those bundled with the map set.
The GPSMAP 640 is considered the most representative model and carries both US coastal data and North American driving maps. It also has the option of an antenna for XM's satellite weather service as well as the radio provider's usual music stations and traffic notification options, all of which can be used either on land or on the water. It should be available at an unspecified near-term date for $1,200.
A second model, the GPSMAP 620, is built for a world audience and holds only a generic worldwide basemap; users are expected to fill in more detailed marine or street information by loading up an SD card. The simplified information brings the price down to $1,000 for its equally unspecified release date.